When Jon first mentioned the idea of getting back into Bolt Action I was all for it. Having built and painted a decent-sized U.S. force, it sounded like a good chance for them to see some action once more. However it wasn’t to be, as it quickly became apparent that the ‘scale shift’ had struck again and we were going to go for a 15mm escalation league.
Of course, you all know that if you have been reading everyone else’s posts, but I decided to stick with the U.S. for now – since I already had the army book (and a rather tidy-looking U.S. dice bag).
Deciding to go for Airborne (so as not to clash with Darren’s U.S. Army force) I was ready to start loading up on flame-throwers in jeeps, but alas, these weren’t allowed in the Italian theatre (cue joke about burning playhouses), so it was back to square one.
Having been thwarted on jeeps with flamethrowers (if only I’d gone for glider squads with flame-throwers – damn you ‘Band of Brothers!’), I decided to go for a mobile force – plenty of guys jumping out of trucks and taking advantage of the move-and-fire rules for the U.S. forces.
Plan A – Truck Spam
But, at just 500 points, it became clear that the trucks would have to stay in the garage for now and my two small units (four rifles and 3 SMGs – including the NCO) would have to walk.
Adding a second lieutenant to the unit kept the HQ cost down too, and I can always promote him if he does well I thought. Besides with the Airborne being veterans they should prove hardy enough to not need him baby-sitting them.
Even this small amount of troops didn’t leave me many more points to play with. I considered MMGs, Mortars, and even an AT Gun, but since there was unlikely to be much heavy armour on the table I went for something more versatile in a medium howitzer. Like the rest of my force I made it veteran – mainly to keep everything simple – but felt that the ability to switch between HE and regular rounds gave it a versatility that would carry over when we added the next 500 points.
What no tows?
While offering a varied threat, the trouble with artillery is that it isn’t the most mobile – and I wanted something to harry Jon’s flame-throwing tankette.
Why should I let him have flame-throwers when I couldn’t? I wasn’t even allowed to ship over a M3A1 Satan tank from Hawaii (OK, so only 20 were ever made, and they were a few miles away, but the time-line matched!). Not allowed flamethrowers, my airborne troops were stood around wondering what to do with their jeeps when suddenly it struck me – bazookas in jeeps!
“Beep, beep, who got the keys to my jeep?”
Fast, mobile, and small, I felt that I could drop the team off to get some good rear armour shots away, while keeping them out of danger from snipers and other annoyances.
This left me with just a handful of points – so I thought I would offer my units some support with another jeep with an MMG. The idea being that I would send it off away from the infantry units to offer some irritation to the enemy, while using the extra range to stay away from small arms fire.
2nd Lt (Veteran) – 65pts
Bazooka (Veteran) – 78pts
Jeep (Veteran) – 25pts
Jeep (Veteran) with MMG – 40pts
M2A1 Medium Howitzer (Veteran) – 84pts
Unit 1 – NCO with SMG plus 4 Rifles & 2 SMG – 100
Unit 2 – NCO with SMG plus 4 Rifles & 2 SMG - 100
Total – 492pts (points to spare, b*tches!)
I had a plan and a list… time for some action!